The Do's and Don'ts for Attending MakerFaire
Back in May, Jason and I went to the Maker Faire in San Mateo. What is the Maker Faire, you ask? Oh, well “lemme esplain... no, too long lemme sum up.”
MakerFaire is a place where makers of arts, robotics, electronics, cosplay, STEM/STEAM organizations, gather together to show off their awesome stuff. Makers from all over come together and share their massive robots, tiny tech, cosplay and unfold their process and discoveries.
It is common to see an R2D2 or BB8 unit rolling around along and drones flying about along with talented cosplayers all dolled up in the decked out garments.
We joined up with CircuitBread and I even played the role of news reporter/journalist and interviewed a few makers! We had a blast and the gadgets are incredible. I learned a lot from attending and here are some of my suggestions:
DO look at the schedule and list of makers in advance.
They post it a couple weeks before the event. We were able to get seats at speaking event with a Laika rigger and hear Adam from Mythbusters share his insights about his making process.
DO get a hotel or AirBNB nearby.
We stayed at the Marriott that was about a mile away. It was nice not to have to worry about parking and transportation.
DON’T just peek around. TALK to the MAKERS.
I was really nervous at first to interview some of the makers in front of a camera, but looking back I wish I had talked to more of them on my own, especially the illustrators and artists.
DO make a list of makers that you want to see.
I made a list of three booths/makers that I wanted to see. There’s just SO MUCH there, that it’s hard to prioritize where to go and who to talk to when you enter the faire without any knowledge of what’s there.
DON'T ignore the side shows and speaking events.
That's how we found the Laika event. I know sometimes we might want to keep walking or ignore those, but we found some really great speaking events including Estefannie Explains It All, Adam Savage from Mythbusters, amazing cosplayers, and more.
Here is a short interview I did with Tiny Circuits while representing CircuitBread:
Overall I would say that this is definitely a family-friendly event. I think kids ages 5+ would really enjoy this experience and gain a lot of insight into the tech world.